Boat travelling past a riverside village in the Amazon Rainforest in Peru
Brand New!

Trek to Machu Picchu and Go to the Amazon

10 nights

Hike the Salkantay Route to the famed Incan citadel before heading deep into the rainforest on this Andes to Amazon adventure

What's Included?

Activities & Certified Guides

All itinerary activities with local, certified, English-speaking guides

All Accommodation

4 nights in hotels, 3 nights camping on the trail and 3 nights in a jungle lodge


All breakfasts, 8 lunches and 8 dinners

Transfers & Porterage

Airport and local transfers, internal flight to Puerto Maldonado, and porters and horses to carry your luggage on the trek

Equipment & Permits

Everything you need for camping along the trail, including your tickets and entry fees

Small Like-minded Groups

Solo-friendly by design, join our small n’ sociable groups of up to 14 like-minded, active and outdoorsy people

excluding flights

What's it like?

Boat travelling past a riverside village in the Amazon Rainforest in Peru
Women sitting overlooking Machu PIcchu, Peru
Wooden boats on the Madre de Dios River in the Peruvian Amazon
Man overlooks the mountains above the clouds on the Salkantay Trek in Peru.
Women crossing a river on the Salkantay Trek in Peru with snow-covered mountains in the background
Reflection of Mt Salkantay in a lake on the Salkantay Trek in Peru.
Red Howler Monkeys laying on a branch in Tamobata rainforest, Amazon, Peru.

Trek through rainforest, over high mountain passes and past epic Andean glaciers on this less crowded alternative to the Inca Trail

Explore the ancient ruins of Machu Picchu, basking in the knowledge that you've made it there on your own two feet

Kick back at a serene lodge in the Peruvian Amazon, spotting wildlife as you hike and canoe along wild waterways

Not up for the Amazon? Stick to the Sacred Valley on our 7-night Salkantay Trek to Machu Picchu

Key Information

Day 1

Arrive in Cusco and meet your crew

Colourful fruit market in the streets of Cusco in Peru's Sacred Valley.

Touchdown in Cusco Airport where you'll be collected by your host and transferred to your hotel, perfectly located off one of the town's main squares. If you’ve got the time, head out to wander the streets for your first real taste of Peruvian culture. Join your guide for dinner at a nearby restaurant later in the evening – a chance to sample the local cuisine and music, as well as get to know your fellow adventurers. After dinner, head back to the hotel and get a good night's sleep.

Day 2

Explore the Sacred Valley

Pisca ruins overlooking the Andes mountains behind in Peru

Today you'll explore the fascinating Sacred Valley, which functioned as an agricultural, spiritual and political hub for the Inca Empire. The two main sites are Pisac and Ollantaytambo, and you'll visit both to learn about their history as you wander their ancient ruins and cobbled streets. On returning to your hotel in Cusco, you’ll get a quick pre-trek briefing from your guide, after which the evening is yours – relax, grab some dinner and probably have an early night, ready for the trekking to begin tomorrow.

Day 3

Take the trail to Humantay Lake

Female hiker overlooking Humantay Lake under the snowy Andes mountains behind


4-5hrs · 10km · 420m up · 400m down

Settle in for a scenic drive from your hotel to Mollepata, where you’ll enjoy breakfast in a local house. After brekkie, you’ll make your way to the the starting point for the Salkantay route in the Cordillera de Vilcabamba at Challacancha (3780m), getting your first glimpse of the Salkantay and Humantay mountains on the way. After loading up the horses, you'll set off towards Soraypampa (3800m), where you'll spend your first night of camping. From here you’ll trek up to the bright turquoise waters of Humantay Lake, sitting below the Humantay Glacier at a high altitude of 4200m, before descending back down to the camp at Soraypampa.

Day 4

Soraypampa to Huayracmachay

View of Salkantay Mountain from the Salkantay Pass in Peru


6-8hrs · 12km · 830m up · 710m down

Fuel up on breakfast: today’s a toughie. Begin along the uphill trail to the highest point of Your trek, the Salkantay Pass at 4630m. Once you reach the top, you'll learn the significance of the mountain to Inca culture, and make an offering to Apu Salkantay. Pass turquoise lakes as you descend to Huayracmachay (3920m), looking out for the lofty peaks of Pumasillo and Humantay mountains in the distance.

Day 5

Huayracmachay to Lucmabamba

Hikers crossing a wooden bridge below a tall waterfall surrounded by jungle in Peru.


9-10hrs · 21km · 50m up · 1870m down

Today you'll continue descending, trekking past lush vegetation and waterfalls as you hike through the rainforest along the Santa Teresa River. Stop at Colpapampa for a lunch break before continuing on to Lucmabamba. After arriving here, you'll can visit a nearby coffee plantation and roam the nearby tomato and avocado fields, sourcing ingredients for your chef to use in tonight’s dinner.

Day 6

Trek to Aguas Calientes via Llactapata

Man walking over train bridge on the way to Aguas Calientes in Peru.


6-7hrs · 13km · 870m up · 880m down

This morning's easy(ish) trek begins after breakfast, as you make your way through the rainforest to the Inca site of Llactapata (2700m). Take time to explore, and catch your first glimpse of Machu Picchu in the distance. From Llactapata, you’ll descend for lunch before boarding a train to Aguas Calientes. Once you arrive you can check in to your hotel – you may even have time for a nap – before making your way to dinner at a local restaurant, with your crew.

Day 7

Explore incredible Machu Picchu

Llama standing in front of Machu Picchu in Peru


4hrs · 3.5km · 296m up · 296m down

Today's the day – Machu Picchu itself. One of the world’s most incredible archaeological sites, it has a breathtaking location to match. You'll catch the bus there for a guided tour which shares the hidden secrets of this ancient site. You’ll return by bus to Aguas Calientes after a long day, continuing your journey back to Cusco via the expedition train to Ollantaytambo, plus another bus. You’ll be back at your hotel with a drink in hand by 21:00, no doubt ready to drop.

Day 8

Venture into the Amazon

Cabanas at the Amazon Jungle Lodge


1 hour

This morning fly to Puerto Maldondo, where you'll head to the pier to start your Amazon Jungle Adventure with a boat ride along the Tambopata Rio Madre de Dios River. Travelling by motorised wooden boat, it will be your first chance to experience the flora and fauna of the jungle before reaching your secluded lodge in the rainforest. After being welcomed to the lodge, meeting your jungle guide and getting checked into your cabana, you'll head out for an evening walk where you'll get to experience the sights and sounds of the jungle at night. You may be able to spot the likes of nightjars, owls, capybaras and caiman lurking on the riverbanks. You'll be back at the lodge in time for a late dinner and Amazonian cocktail, ready for your first night in the rainforest.

Day 9

Walk forest trails and canoe the jungle wetlands

Giant River Otter standing on a log in the amazon Jungle, Peru.


2 hours


2 hours

Grab an early breakfast before hopping back in the motorised wooden boat for a short ride deeper into the rainforest. Explore the forest on foot with your wildlife guide before reaching the beautiful connected lake system of Condenado. Here, you will hop into canoes to explore the tranquil waters. The whole area is rich in bird and aquatic life, as well as being home to a family of giant otters that live in the lake. In the afternoon, head back to the lodge where you can take time to explore the surrounding trails, keeping your eyes peeled for the abundant birdlife or taking a dip in the cool stream beside the lodge. After dark you'll go in search of caiman and other nocturnal animals by canoe along the Tambopata River.

Day 10

Explore Sachavacatoc Lake

Looking out from a wooden boat on a channel through the reeds on Lake Sachavacayoc


3 hours


1 hour

This morning, head to Lake Sachavacayoc – a glassy ox-bow lake found inside the protected Tambopata National Reserve. You'll hike along a sun-dappled rainforest trail before boarding a dug-out canoe to quietly paddle down a stream and glide across Sachavacyoc, surrounded by picture-perfect palms. The serene lake is home to many species of birds, endangered giant river otters, red howler monkeys, red-bellied macaws, anaconda, side-neck turtles and black caiman, among others. After returning to the lodge for lunch the afternoon is yours – you're free to relax at the lodge and soak up your remaining time in this wild jungle environment.

Day 11

Goodbye Amazon

Early morning boat on the Rio Tambopata at sunrise

In the early morning, return to Puerto Maldonado by canoe – catching memorable views of the sunrise over the river with a last chance to spot active wildlife. Howler monkeys are frequently heard as they stake out their territories. Your adventure comes to an end at the airport in Puerto Maldonado. From here you can either fly to your next destination in Peru, or to Lima to catch an international connection.

Day 1

Hotel · Twin share




Day 2

Hotel · Twin share




Day 3 – Day 5

Wild camping · Twin share




Day 6

Hotel · Twin share




Day 7

Hotel · Twin share




Day 8 – Day 10

Lodge · Twin share




Day 11

Departure day




What is the food like?

Food on trek, Choquequirao, Peru

Whilst trekking, an experienced chef will be on-hand to make amazing meals in the middle of the mountains. Expect plenty of hot food and drinks for every meal. Snacks such as chocolate or granola bars, cookies, dried or fresh fruit will be provided in addition to three meals a day during the hike. Breakfasts typically include things like oats (or 'kiwicha', a local supergrain), eggs/omelettes, jam and toast, pancakes and granola. Lunches are usually soups, salads, pasta, or potato-based dishes and dinners tend to be three-course cooked meals complete with dessert! Vegetarians, vegans and other dietary requirements and allergies can be catered for – please just request this on your passenger info form.

What is the accommodation like?

The internal courtyard of the Tierra Viva Centro Hotel, Cusco, at night.

During your time in Cusco, you’ll stay in a centrally located stylish boutique hotel, such as the Tierra Viva Cusco Hotel (or similar). This highly rated hotel is set in a classic colonial house just off the Plaza de Armas (Cusco's main square).

Camp set up on the Choquequirao trail.
On the Salkantay trek

During the trek, you'll camp at various points along the route. Your host will provide a four-man tent for every two people, complete with a Thermarest inflatable mattress and pillow each. You’ll be accompanied by a group chef and porters, who will bring a kitchen tent, dining tent with tables and chairs, and a toilet tent with a portable loo. On Days 2-4 you'll be wild camping with basic wash-bowl facilities provided for freshening up; on Day 5 (Lucmabamba campsite) there will be shower facilities.

Twin room at Hatun Inti, Aguas Calientes, Peru
Aguas Calientes

On the last night of the trek, you'll stay in either the La Cabana Machu Picchu or Andina Luxury in Aguas Calientes, where you can get a a good night's sleep before heading up to Machu Picchu the following day. Both hotels are modern, clean, very friendly and serve a brilliant breakfast.

Double room in Ecolodge Tambopata
In the Amazon

For the Amazon section of your trip, you will stay in the Tambopata Ecolodge, situated deep in the jungle, three hours by boat from Puerto Maldonado. You'll stay in comfortable, twin-share cabanas with ensuite facilities. The lodge has electricity at lunchtime and in the evenings between the hours of 17:00 and 22:00, allowing you to recharge your devices. There is some mobile phone signal with local providers but internet access is only available from the office – the perfect chance for a digital detox!


For solo travellers looking for their own space, an optional private room and tent can be booked for an extra charge, see Optional Extras for the price. Please request this at the time of booking (this is subject to availability).

This trip has been rated as Challenging

A little tougher and higher than the classic Inca Trail (and without any of the permit faff), the Salkantay Trek is a great challenge for those with good fitness who are after quieter trails and dramatic Andean landscapes. The two nights in Cuzco (3350m) before the trek double up as acclimatisation days, but nevertheless - the steep terrain and high altitude will make the going tough at times, particularly on the first three days of the hike. No previous experience is necessary but you will need to be able to walk for up to 10 hours a day, with considerable ascent and descent, for four consecutive days.

What if i need to skip an activity?

As a linear trek it is not possible to skip individual days. However, if there were any issues before or in the early stages of the trek your host may be able to arrange private transport and alternative accommodation (at extra cost) to then be able to rejoin the trip after the trek.

Daily activities during the Amazon section of the trip can be skipped if necessary, where you can relax at the lodge and wait for the group to return from the activity.

What will I need to carry?

Porterage is included, so you'll only need to carry a small daypack with extra layers and bits for that day.

The only one thing you can say about the weather in Peru is that it is difficult to accurately predict. You can have beautifully clear hot days in the middle of the wet season and hail storms in the dry season – it’s one of the beauties of Peru.

In the Andes, there are two main seasons – wet and dry. The wet season runs from November to April and although it is wet, it's usually warmer overall. The dry season runs from May to October and has hot, clear days but cold nights. May and June are two of the most popular months to trek in the Andes as the weather tends to be more stable. If you're spending time in Lima before or after the trip then be aware that the season is the reverse of this so you can expect some grey skies.

The Area




Cusco Airport (CUZ)

Arrive any time on Day 1


Puerto Maldonado Airport (PEM)

Lunchtime on Day 11


Catch a flight arriving into Cusco Airport at any time you like – your host will pick you up. Just bear in mind that if you arrive at the crack of dawn, your hotel room may not be ready for check-in: the usual hotel check-in time is at 13:00. An arrival airport transfer is included even if you decide to arrive earlier than the trip start date – just make sure you let your host know your arrival information in advance

On the last day of the trip (Day 11), you will travel back from the jungle by boat and you'll be transferred to Puerto Maldonado Airport where your trip ends in the late morning, in time for onward flights in the afternoon.

Travel options

There are currently no direct international flights from Europe or the US into Cusco – flights generally involve one or two changes and go via Lima. If you prefer to break up the journey, you could consider flying into Lima a day early and booking an onward flight to Cusco the following day. Airport hotels are available in Lima or, if you have more time to spare, why not stay in the popular Miraflores district of Lima and use this as a base to explore the city?

Your trip ends at Puerto Maldonado Airport. From here, you can book flight connections to Lima or back to Cusco as you prefer, served by LATAM Airlines. The simplest option, if returning home directly after the trip, is to fly from Puerto Maldonado to Lima for onward international connections. It is often possible to include this leg of the journey on the same multi-city booking as your international flight (e.g. London>Cusco, Puerto Maldonado>London, with both options transiting through Lima) if you are flying with LATAM or a code-sharing airline. If you are booking this flight on a separate ticket to your international flight, it may be worth adding an extra night in Lima as insurance against flight delays.

The one-way flight from Cusco to Puerto Maldonado is included in the trip cost and booked for you by your host (passport details must be provided).

See Optional Extras below for prices to book extra nights in Cusco or Lima before or after your tour.

Enjoy 12.5% Off Outdoor Gear

In need of a few more items? All bookings receive a 12.5% discount to use at Cotswold Outdoor, Snow + Rock and Runner's Need.

What's included?

  • Tent, inflatable mattress and pillow
  • Duffle bag for your personal belongings
  • Group oxygen bottle and medical kit

What's available to hire?

  • Sleeping bag
  • Trekking poles

What do I need to bring?

  • Day pack (25-35 litre)
  • Waterproof jacket
  • Warm fleece or down jacket
  • Hiking boots
  • Wicking base layers
  • Light long walking trousers
  • A few t-shirts
  • Hiking socks
  • Winter gloves
  • Beanie and sun hat
  • Down or synthetic feather sleeping bag
  • Warm layers for the first night camping at 4400m
  • Ear plugs
  • Trekking poles (recommended)
  • Head lamp
  • Sunglasses
  • Toiletries (toilet paper, wet wipes, personal towel)
  • Sunscreen (SPF 35+ recommended)
  • Insect repellent
  • Water bottle


  • You'll be given a duffel bag during the trek briefing to pack your trekking gear into. You'll have an 8kg limit per person for porterage, so you'll only need to carry your day pack.

  • Your camp crew will provide you with boiled water every day, which is safe to drink. Should you have any concerns about the water quality, please feel free to bring additional water purification tablets.

*Requests for optional extras can be made after booking on your “My Bookings” page

Sleeping Bag Hire

Payable Before Departure

Sleeping Bag Hire

Trekking Pole Hire

Payable Before Departure

Trekking Pole Hire

Pre/post accommodation in Cusco (Twin/Double/Single)

Payable Before Departure

Pre/post accommodation in Cusco (Twin/Double/Single)

Per Night

Pre/post accommodation in Lima (Single)

Payable Before Departure

Pre/post accommodation in Lima (Single)

Per Night

Pre/post accommodation in Lima (Twin/Double)

Payable Before Departure

Pre/post accommodation in Lima (Twin/Double)

Per Night

Optional Private Room & Tent Upgrade (Salkantay + Amazon)

Payable Before Departure

Optional Private Room & Tent Upgrade (Salkantay + Amazon)

This trip is brand new

We’re still waiting to collect any reviews from other travellers on this trip. However, all our hosts go through an extensive vetting process to ensure that your adventure is awesome.

We partner with the World Land Trust to ensure this trip achieves Net-Zero emissions. We also support their Buy an Acre programme, helping local communities to buy and protect natural habitats in perpetuity.

What's the number?
It works out on average at 136kg of CO2 emissions per person, including all local transport, accommodation, food, activities, guides, staff and office operations.

The only thing it doesn’t include right now is flights and travel to the destination. We do make an overall estimate across all our customers separately, but as we don’t book flights, have customers from all corners of the world, and no way of reliably knowing their travel plans, we simply can’t include an individual number in the figure on display here. We’ve got a goal to fix that, so that when you book, there is a way to measure and mitigate the carbon emitted by your flight too.

But what does the number mean?
Yep, hard to picture eh? To give you an idea:

  • Driving 1000miles/1609km would be approx. 281kg of CO2 in an average car (or 140.5kg per person if there was 2 of you in it).
  • A return economy class flight London - New York would be approx. 1,619kg (1.66 tonnes) per person.
  • 10 trees in a temperate forest are estimated to remove approx. 250kg of CO2 from the air in a period of 5-10 years.

What are we doing about it?
Our trips are relatively low-carbon by design, and we're working with all our hosts to develop long term carbon reduction plans. We partner with the World Land Trust to ensure this trip achieves Net-Zero emissions. We also support their Buy an Acre programme, helping local communities to buy and protect natural habitats in perpetuity, ensuring the protection of the reserve and its wildlife.

Want to know more?
Amazingly, no international travel company has ever publicly published their carbon measurements before, as far as we know. We believe that must change, quickly. So we’re openly sharing the method we used in the hope that other companies will be able to more easily follow suit and build on what we've done so far. You'll find it all here.

This trip visits locations at or above 4500m. At this altitude some people may experience symptoms associated with Altitude Sickness, also known as Acute Mountain Sickness (AMS). The likelihood of more severe conditions, such as HAPE (High Altitude Pulmonary Edema) and HACE (High Altitude Cerebral Edema), increases at higher altitudes. Previous experience at high altitude is not necessarily an indicator of future performance. Your guide(s) are trained to mitigate the risks associated with altitude, by carefully managing the rate of ascent and the intensity of the activity, and to provide the appropriate support response should someone feel ill during the trip. Should you experience health issues during your trip you should inform your guide immediately so the proper care can be provided. Owing to the nature of this trip, it is essential that your personal travel insurance policy provides cover up to the maximum altitude visited on this trip as well as emergency medical evacuation by helicopter.

Sure can! Over 70% of our travellers travel solo, it’s a great way to meet like-minded people.

Clean drinking water will be provided for you each morning and at meals. In an effort to eliminate plastic waste you must bring your own water bottle or hydration bladder with you. If you are concerned about the water quality, please feel free to bring additional water purification tablets.

Tips are not included in the trip cost. These are entirely at your discretion but there is an expectation to tip for good service. Your guide will help with advice however we suggest the below as a guideline:

  • If each porter/horseman were to receive 60-70 soles and your chef received 120-150 soles in total from the group, this would be considered a generous tip, and your team would be delighted!
  • We recommend that your guide is tipped personally, and would suggest between 60-100 soles per person.

Of course, you are free to tip more or less and the amount should be reflective of your perception of service and quality – a tip is not compulsory and should only be given when you receive excellent service.

We recommend checking out the country specific information and also talking to a travel nurse.

Yes, it is possible to leave excess luggage items at the start hotel in Cusco and pick them up after the trek. Unless you are returning to Cusco after the trip, you'll have to take any extra luggage with you to the Amazon and Puerto Maldanado, where the trip ends.

No, for this trek you do not need to organise a permit, and entrance to Machu Picchu is included in the price of the trip.

The Inca Trail has all the fame, but in our humble opinion, this is a better, less crowded trek. It passes through more dramatic landscapes, past Inca ruins, and still ends at Machu Picchu. It is widely regarded as the best alternative trek, and though that does mean you won’t have the trail to yourself, our local guides will keep you away from the crowds and camping away from other groups. You'll also evade the permit requirement and strict regulations that are enforced on the Inca Trail.

Yes, horses are used by the local team to assist with the logistics of transporting food and camping equipment. They are cared for on the trail by trained handlers within the porterage team. Your host in Peru has the accreditation to work with horses, and they take steps to ensure the welfare of horses by applying a maximum weight of 30kg per horse on a maximum of two trekking expeditions per month. Please be aware that you may encounter other local trekking companies whilst on the trail who sadly do not take the same stringent approach to animal welfare.

For current advice about travelling in Peru, have a read of the UK Foreign Office pages.

Owing to the nature of this trip, it is essential that your personal travel insurance policy provides cover to the maximum altitude visited on this trip (4630m).

Our recommended travel insurance provider is Campbell Irvine.

Travel insurance is compulsory for all of our adventures and you are required to provide your policy information before departing.

Your insurance should include adequate protection for overseas medical treatment, evacuation/repatriation, your baggage and equipment and the specific activities involved on your adventure. We also strongly recommend it includes cancellation and curtailment insurance, should you be unable to join your trip for specific reasons such as illness.

We fully endorse Campbell Irvine as their insurance offers all of the above, so get in touch with them or call on 020 7938 1734 to get your insurance sorted. We suggest that you book travel insurance as soon as you book your adventure, just to cover you for any last-minute life changes. We know you’re an active lot and injuries do happen!

We automatically convert prices from the local currency that a host receives to your chosen currency. We update our exchange rates on a daily basis so this does mean that prices displayed on the site are subject to currency fluctuations, which is why you may see them change over time.

If you wish to change the currency you pay in, head to the bottom of the page.

All of our group adventures are specially designed for adults to enjoy (18+) as we want these adventures to bring together outdoorsy people who are truly like-minded. Children can be accommodated on some private departures.

You're always in good company on one of our adventures.

Our trips are typically made up of a mixture of solo travellers and small groups of 2 or 3 friends, with most in their 30s-50s.

Our sociable adventures are solo-friendly by design and naturally attract outdoorsy people with a shared mindset; a love for adventure, a desire to push themselves and meet awesome, like-minded people along the way.

It’s this camaraderie that has so often turned a great adventure into a life-changing one.

Don't just take our word for it:

  • 95% of people rate the group dynamics on our trips 5/5
  • 90% of people recommend joining a trip to make new friends
  • 75% of people have met people on our trips that they would now consider friends

See here for more info about the Much Better Adventures tribe.

Interested in a more exclusive experience? Opt for a 'Private Group' through the dates and prices tab to book this adventure for just you and your chosen companions.

Our team of Adventure Hunters create exclusive adventures with highly vetted, specialist hosts. We only work with independent, local in-destination experts who know the very best places to explore and how to stay safe. Read more information about the local teams we partner with.

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Our friendly and expert team is on hand to help you choose one of our adventures. So if you want answers to questions like "Who else is going?" or anything else about this trip – please get in touch.

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May 2025

Thursday • 8th May 2025

to Sunday • 18th May 2025
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Thursday • 22nd May 2025

to Sunday • 1st June 2025
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